United univer­sity work­ers and stu­dents ‘gained a vic­tory’

Cape Times - - NEWS - Do­minic Adri­aanse

SA LIB­ER­ATED Pub­lic Sec­tor Work­ers Union rep­re­sen­ta­tive Abra­ham Agul­las said they had been able to ob­tain a vic­tory in ne­go­ti­a­tions with UCT man­age­ment only by hav­ing a united work­ers union and stu­dent front.

Ne­go­ti­a­tions be­tween the univer­sity’s ex­ec­u­tive man­age­ment, unions and stu­dent rep­re­sen­ta­tives ended with all par­ties agree­ing on is­sues re­lated to ca­ter­ing staff work­ing hours and shift al­lowances.

While they had reached an agree­ment on ca­ter­ing work­ers and staff hours, Agul­las said, there was a con­cern re­gard­ing UCT man­age­ment’s lead­er­ship lead­ing up to the agree­ment.

“It had taken a united work­ers union and stu­dent front, with the threat of a strike, to get all par­ties to fi­nally come to the ta­ble. We started the process five months ago and even went to the CCMA, but we will con­tinue un­til all work­ers are earn­ing an equal stan­dard,” said Agul­las.

He said while this was a vic­tory for in-sourc­ing, there were still other is­sues like bonuses and 13th cheques that needed to be ad­dressed, while ex­ec­u­tives earned ex­trav­a­gantly.

SRC mem­ber Khu­l­ulwe Mti said the #EndOut­sourc­ing and #FeesMustFall move­ment had been in­volved since the be­gin­ning of the univer­sity protest.

“We sup­port our mem­bers and we have been in­volved in the ne­go­ti­a­tions process since the be­gin­ning.

“There are still stu­dent is­sues that need to be ad­dressed and we hope th­ese ne­go­ti­a­tions will re­sult in fur­ther en­gage­ment by the univer­sity man­age­ment,” said Mti.

The univer­sity is­sued a state­ment by vice-chan­cel­lor Max Price which said ne­go­ti­a­tions con­tin­ued through­out Wed­nes­day and an agree­ment was reached that put an end to the threat of strike ac­tion.

“The agree­ment es­tab­lishes a joint con­sul­ta­tive fo­rum and a small spe­cial task team on which all recog­nised trade unions may be rep­re­sented to tackle any resid­ual is­sues fol­low­ing the in-sourc­ing ex­er­cise last year.

“If the terms of the agree­ment can be suc­cess­fully im­ple­mented, it will pro­vide a good ex­am­ple of what can be achieved when par­ties com­mit to meet­ing in­ter­ests on both sides of the ta­ble,” read Price’s state­ment.

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